Music uplifts and gives us energy to keep going, so when I'm feeling down I turn on my "Inspiration Playlist" on Spotify to snap myself out of it. My playlist currently has 228 songs and I add to it whenever I hear a new happy song. I’m not picky about artist or genre, if the song inspires, I add it. I didn't want to list all 200+, so I decided to pick 50 and include the most inspirational (or my favorite) lyric from each song. I think everyone should have such a playlist and you can use these songs to start one of your own.
50 Inspirational Songs to Boost Your Mood:
1. Nothing More (feat. Lily Costner) - The Alternate Routes "And tell me what it is that you see, A world that’s full of endless possibilities, And heros don't look like they used to, They look like you do."
2. Best Day of My Life - American Authors "Everything is looking up, Everybody up now, This is going to be the best day of my life."
3. Welcome to Wherever You Are - Bon Jovi "When everybody's in and you're left out, And you feel you're drowning in the shadow of a doubt, Everyone's a miracle in their own way, Listen to yourself, not what other people say."
4. Who I Was Born to Be - Susan Boyle "And though I may not, Know the answers, I can finally say I'm free, And if the questions, Led me here, then, I am who, I was born to be."
5. Only a Mountain - Jason Castro "This is only a mountain, You don't have to find your way around it, Tell it to move, it'll move, Tell it to fall, it'll fall."
6. I Was Here - Kristin Chenoweth "I wanna do something that matters, Say something different, Something that sets the whole world on it's ear."
7. People Like Us - Kelly Clarkson "You've just gotta turn it up loud when the flames get higher."
8. I Got a Name - Jim Croce "I've got a song, I've got a song, And I I carry it with me and I sing it loud, If it gets me nowhere, I'll go there proud."
9. The Best of What's Around - Dave Matthews Band "Whatever tears at us, Whatever holds us down, And if nothing can be done, We'll make the best of what's around."
10. Rise Up - Andra Day "And I'll rise up, I'll rise like the day, I'll rise up, I'll rise unafraid, I'll rise up, And I'll do it a thousand times again."
11. Life for Rent - Dido "I always thought that I would love to live by the sea, To travel the world alone and live more simply."
12. I Like It - Dixie Chicks “Living the lows, Makes the highs that much higher, And the sun will shine through, The smoke and fire of love.”
13. Bright - Echosmith "I think the universe is on my side, Heaven and Earth have finally aligned, Days are good and that's the way it should be."
14. O-o-h Child - The Five Stairsteps "Some day, yeah, We'll walk in the rays of a beautiful sun, Some day, When the world is much brighter."
15. Don’t Stop - Fleetwood Mac "If you wake up and don't want to smile, If it takes just a little while, Open your eyes and look at the day, You'll see things in a different way."
16. Shake It Out - Florence and the Machine "And it's hard to dance with the devil on your back, So shake him off."
17. Touch the Sky - Julie Fowlis (from Brave) “I will hear their every story, Take hold of my own dream, Be as strong as the seas are stormy, and proud as an eagle’s scream.”
18. Good to Be Alive (Hallelujah) - Andy Grammer "Sometimes you gotta get scars to get what you deserve, I kept moving on and now I'm moving up, damn, I'm feeling blessed with all this love.
19. Beauty in the World - Macy Gray “Shake your booty boys and girls for the beauty in the world, Pick your diamond pick your pearl there is beauty in the world.”
20. On Top of The World - Imagine Dragons "I've been waiting to smile, Been holding it in for a while, Take you with me if I can, Been dreaming of this since a child."
21. Get Back Up Again - Anna Kendrick (from Trolls) “What if it’s all a big mistake? What if it’s more than I can take? No, I can’t think that way, ‘Cause I know that I’m really-really-really gonna be okay.”
22. Girl on Fire - Alicia Keys “Oh, she got both feet on the ground, And she's burning it down, Oh, she got her head in the clouds, And she's not backing down.”
23. Beautiful - Carole King "You've got to get up every morning, With a smile on your face, And show the world all the love in your heart."
24. The Edge of Glory - Lady Gaga "Put on your shades 'cause I'll be dancing in the flames."
25. Fly - Avril Lavigne “A little help is all it ever takes, Somebody has to tell you it's worth fighting, A single step becomes a leap of faith, That's when you realize you started flying."
26. Wings - Little Mix "No matter what you say it won't hurt me, Don't matter if I fall from the sky, These wings are made to fly."
27. Three Little Birds - Bob Marley "Don't worry 'bout a thing, 'Cause every little thing gonna be alright."
28. Wonder - Natalie Merchant “Doctors have come from distant cities, just to see me, Stand over my bed, disbelieving what they're seeing, They say I must be one of the wonders, Of God's own creation, And as far as they see, they can offer, No explanation.”
29. Thank You - Alanis Morrissette “The moment I let go of it was, The moment I got more than I could handle, The moment I jumped off of it was, The moment I touched down.”
30. Follow Your Arrow - Kacey Musgraves “Say what you feel, Love who you love, 'Cause you just get, So many trips 'round the sun, Yeah, you only, Only live once.”
31. Daylight the Dog - OAR “Hoping for daylight to follow me, If you’re lost in the dark get to where you can see, There is somewhere we're supposed to be, And you know, In a matter of time you set yourself free.”
32. Be Okay - Oh Honey “I'm wide awake, so what's the point of dreaming when your life is great? Celebrate the feeling, celebrate the feeling.”
33. Good Life - One Republic "When you're happy like a fool, Let it take you over, When everything is out, You gotta take it in."
34. Wildflowers - Tom Petty “You belong among the wildflowers, You belong in a boat out at sea, Sail away, kill off the hours, You belong somewhere you feel free.”
35. Instead - Madeleine Peyroux "Instead of feelin' low, Get high on everything that you love."
36. Fight Song - Rachel Platten “This is my fight song, Take back my life song, Prove I'm alright song, My power's turned on, Starting right now I'll be strong, I'll play my fight song, And I don't really care if nobody else believes, 'Cause I've still got a lot of fight left in me.”
37. Don’t Stop Me Now - Queen “I'm a shooting star leaping through the sky, Like a tiger defying the laws of gravity, I'm a racing car passing by like Lady Godiva, I'm gonna go go go, There's no stopping me.”
38. If You Want to Sing Out, Sing Out - Cat Stevens “Well, if you want to sing out, sing out, And if you want to be free, be free, 'Cause there's a million things to be, You know that there are.”
39. She’s a Rainbow - The Rolling Stones “She's like a rainbow, Coming, colors in the air, Oh, everywhere, She comes in colors.”
40. Almost There - Anika Noni Rose (from The Princess and the Frog) “There’s been trials and tribulations, You know I’ve had my share, But I’ve climbed a mountain, I’ve crossed a river, And I’m almost there.”
41. On Our Way - The Royal Concept “We are young, we are one, Let us shine for what it's worth.”
42. Follow the Sun - Xavier Rudd “Breathe, breathe in the air, Set your intentions, Dream with care, Tomorrow is a new day for everyone, Brand new moon, brand new sun.”
43. Try Everything - Shakira (from Zootopia) - I won't give up, no I won't give in, Till I reach the end, And then I'll start again, No I won't leave, I wanna try everything, I wanna try even though I could fail.”
44. Feeling Good - Nina Simone “Been flying high, You know how I feel, Sewn in the sky, You know how I feel, Breeze drifting on by, You know how I feel, It's a new a dawn, And a new day, And a new life for me, And I'm feeling good.”
45. Do It - Spice Girls "Come on and do it, It's time to free what's in your soul, You gotta get it right, this time, Come on freak and lose control."
46. Up the Ladder to the Roof - The Supremes "Come with me, And we shall run across the sky, And illuminate the night, Oh I will try and guide you, To better times and brighter days."
47. Today is Your Day - Shania Twain "Brush yourself up, no regrets, This is as good as it gets, Don't expect more or less, Just go out and give it your best."
48. So Small - Carrie Underwood "Sometimes that mountain you've been climbing is just a grain of sand, And what you've been out there searching for forever, Is in your hands."
49. Happy - Pharrell Williams (from Despicable Me 2) "Your love is too high, to bring me down, Can't nuthin', bring me down."
50. Overjoyed - Stevie Wonder "And though you don't believe, That they do, They do come true, For did my dreams, Come true when I looked at you."
What songs inspire you? Please share in the comments. I'm always looking to add to my list.
"Music is such a great healing balm and a great way to forget your troubles." - Ricky Skaggs
Alex Moresco (pictured, right) is a champion for people with Lyme. After she was diagnosed, she made it her mission to help others and raise awareness of Lyme disease. This past summer she partnered with the Global Lyme Alliance to put on even called the SubLyme Soiree to Chicago where she lives. The event featured gluten and dairy-free food and drinks from some of the top chefs in Chicago and raised over $60,000 for research. Now she's partnering with GLA again by starting the In the Lymelight podcast with her best friend Sarah Aiken (pictured, left). In this interview you will learn Alex's Lyme story and all about a live taping of In the Lymelight that is happening at Zanies Chicago. I will definitely be there cheering her on and I hope you will join me if you live in the Chicagoland area.
What is your Lyme story? How do you think you contracted Lyme, how long did it take you to get a diagnosis, and where are you in your treatment?
My Lyme story is a little bit convoluted--just like everyone else's. About two years ago, I got incredibly sick and had the "flu" for months. Shocker—I am not a woodsy person but had just come back from Northern Michigan for the first time and had no idea that I should be checking for ticks. I never saw a rash or a bulls-eye.
I got a little bit better and brushed it aside. Later that year, the space around my thyroid swelled up and never went down. It hurt and was a lump the size of half a golf ball. I was misdiagnosed with thyroid cancer and it took eight specialists to finally decide that I did not have cancer and that it was "all in my head."
I had asked my primary care doctor to test me for Lyme disease and she refused: saying that Lyme disease does not exist and any doctor that tests you is a "charlatan."
I pushed forward and it became dire for me to get answers when I started losing my memory last September and couldn't get out of bed. I found a doctor that had treated me when I was little and had Mycoplasma pneumonia--he had been the only person that could help me. I found him at The Raby Institute at Northwestern. We weren't sure what was wrong for the first few months--eventually the Lyme disease question popped back up and he tested me and sure enough it didn’t come back as a CDC positive, but enough bars came back positive to raise some red flags.
I started seeing a team of doctors in Wisconsin that did some intensive testing and we found Lyme, babesia and bartonella amongst a few other things. I had a heart murmur which means the Lyme had started moving into my heart which I find terrifying but thankfully we have corrected that. I think that goes to show you how many parts of the body Lyme can cause damage and that we should always take a Lyme disease diagnosis seriously.
Personally, I suffer from severe memory loss, joint pain, muscle soreness, chronic fatigue among many other symptoms.
Personally I am on a mix of antibiotics and homeopathic medications. I recently began IV antibiotics. I go for cupping and lymphatic drainage once a week and cannot say enough good things and what those two therapies have done for me! Overall, I have seen quite a bit of improvement but still have a long way to go. I try to take it one day at a time.
If people are interested, they can see part of my battle with Lyme on the show I am on that just came out, PR Girl.
You have started a podcast called In the Lymelight in partnership with the Global Lyme Alliance. Why did you want to do a podcast and what will you be discussing on the show?
When I got diagnosed with Lyme disease, I found the amount of information online terrifying and overwhelming. While I wasn't in the mental space at the time, I knew that there had to be a better way for people to get information on our illness. After getting over the mental hurdle (I am still not quite over it) of accepting that yes I am sick and need to accept that, I decided that the best place to channel my energy was trying to help others. I knew that I wanted to create a safe space for Lymies to stay up to date on information without being overwhelmed, but wasn't sure what the best way to do that was.
I finally settled on a podcast because I know that many with Lyme cannot focus on reading, etc., and dragged my best friend Sarah Aiken into it. Our goal is to yes, discuss the difficult topics, but also to have some lighter episodes like interviews with health influencers and all-natural skincare experts.
I do a lot of work with Global Lyme Alliance and love what they stand for and that they are a space for factual information. Having In The Lymelight on their platform just made sense.
While our introductory episode was just released, we also chatted with Amanda Smith of Amanda’s Kitchen, gut health expert Sarah Greenfield and famed comedian Chris Jones on using comedy to overcome depression.
"Alex and I really wanted to put something out there where people affected by Lyme Disease including friends and family could find information that isn't overwhelming and is easy to understand…I know that I could have used this when Alex was first diagnosed." - Sarah Aiken, co-host of In The Lymelight.
There is a live taping of the podcast coming up in Chicago, can you tell us about it?
I could talk about our upcoming live podcast for hours—I am so excited! One of my goals is to keep putting together smaller events related to Lyme disease and GLA throughout the year so Lymies have a space to get together and also use these to build awareness of our invisible illness.
Sarah and I are hosting our very first live podcast at Zanies in Chicago on November 30th, 2017 from 6-8pm. We really aim to bring knowledge and humor to a somber topic so Zanies was the perfect venue fit.
Our guest that night is famed comedian and hypnotist Chris Jones. A Chicago native and previous Zanies performer, Chris took the entertainment world by storm after he hypnotized notorious germaphobe Howie Mandel into shaking hands on America’s Got Talent and continues to wow with appearances on Windy City Live, NBC and Steve Harvey. We will be discussing how to use comedy to overcome depression: something most of us with Lyme suffer from. It will be a great night full of honest conversation and hopefully some laughs!
How have your friends and family reacted to your illness?
I am truly so blessed to have such an amazing support system. My family is so supportive and understanding and knows that this will be a long road to remission. They make me laugh when I need to laugh and let me cry when I need to cry.
With my friends it was a hurdle. I think that when you are 24 and sick the way we are sick with Lyme disease, other 24 year olds do not immediately understand what you are going through. At first it was a lot of "I don’t understand why you can't just go out for dinner with us" etc. I think that it is a real struggle being so sick and also losing friends along the way when really your friends should be rallying around you: but if this is happening to you, know that you are not alone and we WILL get through this!
Thankfully I do have a few good friends who are so kind and understanding and they have become my best friends.
What do you want people to know about Lyme disease?
In general I would love for people to simply be aware of Lyme disease and know the symptoms to look out for if they are feeling off.
I would also like for people to know just how severe of an illness Lyme disease is. In other countries, they treat Lyme the way they treat cancer. Those of us with Lyme are constantly going through something so our day to day lives aren't ever "normal."
Bottom line: chronically ill or not, everyone is going through their own personal battles so always try to be kind to everyone you meet.
What are you most grateful for in your healing journey?
I am so grateful to my family for being the best support system. I know that when one person is ill it takes a toll on everyone around them.
I am also just so grateful that I can get the kind of treatment I am. I always say that I am one of the lucky ones because my family can afford treatment, which is unacceptable: everyone should have access to a doctor that can treat them. I am making it my mission to help those with voices that aren't being heard and to support GLA to help find a cure.
Please share a mantra or quote that inspires you:
Growing up, my mom always said, "say little, do much" and has a plaque that hangs in our kitchen with that saying. It has always inspired me to not just talk about what I want to do, but actually get out there and do it.
Buy tickets to the upcoming live taping of In the Lymelight here.
Find episodes of In the Lymelight here.
Connect with Alex on Instagram: @alitmoresco
Note: This essay first appeared on The Mighty on 10/9/2017
Recently, I received a reply on Twitter to an article I’d written about living with Lyme disease. It said, “So true. So powerful. Thank you for writing this (green heart emoji).” Right away I knew this reply was from a fellow Lyme patient. The green heart emoji might not mean anything to most people, but for the Lyme disease community it’s like our secret handshake.
Not surprisingly, the Lyme community chose lime green as our awareness color. It’s a cute play on a homonym. We use limes to represent many things. For example, one of our biggest fundraisers, The Lyme Disease Challenge, is to take a bite out of a lime and post a picture or video on social media. Currently, there is no lime emoji, so instead we use the green heart, which on some operating systems appears lime green. Other groups of people use the green heart emoji, but in our corner of the internet we have claimed it as our own.
Many of us put a green heart in our social media profiles to symbolize our Lyme warrior status and when we write messages to one another many of us put a green heart at the end of the message to show we understand. Even large Lyme non-profit organizations, like the Global Lyme Alliance, use the green heart in their tweets and other social media posts. This practice has spread far and wide throughout the Lyme community.
My Lyme story echoes most Lyme stories. From the time I first started seeking medical treatment for my strange symptoms, 10 years passed before I got a diagnosis. When I was finally diagnosed with Lyme, I went from being isolated to having a huge community of other people like me.
Chronic Lyme disease is often denied by the mainstream medical community. They refer to it as post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome and say there is no treatment. Most of us with chronic Lyme disease were not willing to accept that fate, and have created online and community support groups to help locate knowledgeable doctors and compare symptoms and treatments. I often turn to the online support group in Illinois when a new symptom arises. Usually someone else has experienced the same symptom and can point me in the right direction. The online community is also wonderful for those really bad days when I just need to vent or have a cyber-shoulder to cry on.
When I first started my blog and social media accounts I didn’t know about the green heart, but slowly I noticed that after each tweet or direct message there was that heart. Soon, I started to use it, too, and I liked how it added something to the message, like a winky face, but just for Lyme. Eventually, I added it to my Twitter and Instagram profiles and when people came upon my profile they already knew a little bit about me and the type of symptoms I was dealing with.
The green heart emoji is a little symbol of what we all face together and a small act of solidarity and love. Lyme patients, let’s keep spreading the love across the internet, one green heart at a time.
"No beauty shines brighter than that of a good heart." - Unknown
I'm Kerry and I was diagnosed with chronic Lyme disease in 2016. This is a positive space for those of us coping with Lyme disease and other invisible illnesses.